Truckers protest fuel prices in Georgia

| 3/19/2008

As many as 40 truckers in Georgia parked their rigs on Monday, March 17, to protest the high cost of fuel and low freight rates.

“We are hoping that we can get the freight to go up or the (fuel) prices to go down,” trucking company owner Tracy Crafter of Thomaston, GA, told Land Line.

Crafter, one of the organizers of the protest in Thomaston, predicted similar protests will occur if lawmakers and others don’t tune in to the problems. He said numerous calls placed to lawmakers have gone unanswered, but the truckers will keep trying.

“The way we come to this point, if you do the math on it – trucks get five miles to the gallon, there’s no way to make a profit. Fuel is $4.05 right now,” he said.

A 200-gallon fill-up at $4.05 amounts to $810. Crafter said low freight rates and multi-brokered loads leave little money for truckers to take home. Small trucking companies everywhere are downsizing, he said.

“I had four trucks, and now I’m down to one,” Crafter said.

Crafter said he wished more truckers would park their rigs to show support, but he understands the implications of shutting down.

“A lot of the guys said they couldn’t afford to stop,” he said.

– By David Tanner, staff writer